Week 1 (1.18)
What is a modeling? What is simulation? Why learn how to do them? What does the course look like? How will we proceed?
To Do List
- Obtain books.
- Ascertain web access and familiarity with digital tools.
- Attend and participate in class and lab.
Lab demo document
Share a folder
Week 2 (1.25)
Learning is not what is poured from the pitcher, but what lands in the glass.
-Tara Gray and Laura Madson
Class 1 Introduction to logic models, why, what, how
- Watch animated video Logic Models for Extension (4:07)
- Logic Models in Public Health (9:56)
- W.K. Kellogg Foundation. 2004. Logic Model Development Guide (scan table of contents and introduction and read chapter 1)
- Write up problem 460, an example from the Kellogg reading.
- Work through Exercise 1 in Kellogg prior to class.
Class 2 More
- Brief introduction to program logic models (outcomes models) Paul Duignan (DOVIEW Software ) (5:03)
- Finish reading Kellogg booklet
Lab Building Logic Models in MS Office
Problem Set 1
Week 3 (2.1)
That's the wrong way to think about it. Don't try to think about it all at once.
- Jeb Rubenfeld
A flow chart is a graphic representation of the logic of a deterministic process that can contain contingencies and repetition.
Class 1 Prerequisites, if/then/else, basics, action, decision, loops
- Ryan: Flow Charts, An Introduction
- Stoked & Zeckhauser, pp. 9-10
- Problems 71, 72
- Univ Plymouth, UK: Flow Charts for Simple Tasks: Tutorial with exercises
- Univ Plymouth, UK: Flow Charts for Classification: Tutorial with exercises
- (optional) Wikipedia Flow Charts
Class 2 Stepwise refinement, division of labor
- Ryan: Stepwise Refinement
- Ryan: Division of Labor
- Wirth, N. 1971. "Program Development by Stepwise Refinement." Communications of the ACM, Vol. 14, No. 4, April 1971, pp. 221-227. (OPTIONAL)
- Problems 91, 244, 322, 323, 248, 249
- About.COM: the IF Function)
- MS Excel Help: Switch between relative, absolute, and mixed references
- Problems 73, 88, 89, 90
Weeks 4,5 (2.8, 2.15)
Class 1 Math pre-reqs; Basic tree analysis, folding back (dt01Probability dt02Expected Value dt03Translation dt04Simple tree analysis)
- Ryan: Math refresher and Probability Review
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 12, pp. 201-215
- Ryan: "Decision Analysis I"
- Problems 2, 3, 92, 93
- Wikipedia on Decision Analysis
Class 2 The value of information (dt05)
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 12, pp. 215-221
- Ryan: Working Backward
- Ryan: The Value of Information
- Problems 95, 100
Lab: Building a Decision Model in Excel (part 1)
- Read about TEXT(), conditional formatting, spinner controls in Excel help
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 12], "Imperfect Tests," pp. 221-236
- Ryan: Tree flipping and Imperfect Tests
- Problems 102, 103
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 12, "Allowing for Risk Aversion," pp. 216-219
- Ryan: Including Risk
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 12, "Utility Theory," pp. 236-254
- Problems tba
Lab: Building a Decision Model in Excel (part 2)
Week 6.5,7 (2.25, 2.29)
"The overall name of these interrelated structures is system. The motorcycle is a system. A real system. …There's so much talk about the system. And so little understanding. That's all a motorcycle is, a system of concepts worked out in steel. There's no part in it, no shape in it that is not in someone's mind. I've noticed that people who have never worked with steel have trouble seeing this- that the motorcycle is primarily a mental phenomenon."
- Robert Pirsig Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
Up to now we have modeled the decisions of individual agents. Now we will transition to thinking about modeling the behavior of systems as a whole. The system may be composed of many agents, each responding to environmental conditions which may be effects their behavior (that is, they may be subject to feedback). We will start with difference equations and then slide into stock and flow models and systems dynamics.
- Review Using Subscripts if mathematical subscripts are not familiar
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, pp. 47-58
- Ryan: Difference Equations, An Introduction
- Problems: 107 | 108 | 109 | 110 | 111 | 5
Class 2 Equilibria
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, pp. 58-66
- Ryan: "Rates and Amounts"
- Ryan: "Equilibria"
- Problems: 107 | 108 | 109 | 110 | 111 | 5 (WITH full charts, etc.)
Lab Difference Equations
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, pp. 66-73
- Ryan: Stock and Flow Models
- Ryan: Stock and Flow Models II
- Wikipedia Stock and Flow and Systems Dynamics Models
- Kirkwood, Ch. 1 "System Behavior and Causal Loops"
- Problems: 132,134,135
Lab Stock and Flow Models
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, pp. 89-97
Week 8,9 (3.7, 3.14)
If you optimize everything, you will always be unhappy.
- Donald Knuth
With decision trees we learned how we can make the best choice among alternatives. But what about when we need to choose a best combination of things to accomplish our objectives?
Class 1 Math prereqs, basic concepts, graphing (Slides: PDF, PPTX, KEY, class handout)
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, Ch.11, "Linear Programming" 177-188
- Ryan: Math Prereqs for LP
- Ryan: Linear Programming I
- Problems 219 220 221 223 224
- Stokey &Zeckhauser, Ch.11, "Linear Programming," pp. 188-200
- Excel Easy: Solver Tutorial
- Problems 327 226 227 228 229 230 231
Lab Using Solver with Excel
- Excel Easy: Solver Tutorial
Class 3 Intermediate Considerations
- Problems tba
Class 4 Issues and Caveats
Lab More with Solver
Week 10 (3.28)
A sparrow in thy hand is better than a thousand sparrows flying.
- Ahiqar, 6th century BCE
Why exactly is a bird in the hand worth two in the bush? Is this actually true? In this module we will learn how to compute the present value of a stream of costs or revenues so that comparisons can be made between different scenarios in which costs and benefits occur over a span of time.
- Math Prereqs
- Stokey & Zeckhauser Ch. 10, "The Valuation of Future Consequences: Discounting," pp. 159-165
- Ryan: "Discounting"
- Problems TBA
Class 2 internal rate of return, payback; Where do discount rates come from? Caveats and issues
- Stokey & Zeckhauser Ch. 10, "The Valuation of Future Consequences: Discounting," pp. 165-176
- Problems TBA
Lab NPV and its friends
Week 11,12 (4.4, 4.11)
[The Freedom of Information Act is] the Taj Mahal of the Doctrine of Unanticipated Consequences, the Sistine Chapel of Cost-Benefit Analysis Ignored.”
- Antonin Scalia
Preamble. Integer ut lobortis lorem, in tristique velit. Curabitur ante metus, mollis vitae dolor quis, pellentesque semper enim. Nulla nec fringilla nibh, posuere gravida erat. Nunc sed odio luctus, efficitur enim venenatis, suscipit ante. In ac orci blandit, iaculis ligula at, aliquet tortor.
Class 1 Concepts, Fundamental Rule, The Four Cases
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 9, pp. 134-45
- Ryan: Cost Benefit Analysis
- Wikipedia Cost Benefit Analysis
- Problems TBA (on concept and recognizing types)
- Stokey & Zeckhauser, ch. 9, pp. 146-58
- Problem set 1
Class 4 Issues and Caveats
Problem Set 1
Week 13,14 (4.18, 4.25) REVIEW
Attendance As a graduate class, 100% attendance is expected. You are responsible for obtaining from classmates or other sources any materials missed because of absences. Do not contact the instructor with valid excuses. Attendance at lab, in particular, is expected to be 100%; missed labs may result in final grade attenuation at instructor's discretion.
Class Preparation and Assignments You are expected to read, work with, and learn from assigned readings BEFORE the class in which they will be discussed. Do not expect lectures and notes you might take during them to suffice for learning the material. Written assignments are due when they are due without exception. Expect zero credit and zero feedback on any work not submitted by deadlines. Better incorrect and incomplete but on time. Incorrect or incomplete work should still be presented in as professional a manner as possible.
Digital Tools: This course makes extensive use of various digital tools. You are expected to check your email at least once every 24 hours for potential course updates. Students will maintain a digital portfolio and most work will be submitted digitally. Please inform instructor if lack of access to hardware or network poses an impediment to course work. Syllabus is subject to adjustment based on class members' progress; current syllabus always online at http://ppol225.danryan.us.
Academic Integrity In the academy, plagiarism is a serious breach of trust that destroys one's credibility. Academic dishonesty will not be tolerated in this course. Academic dishonesty includes all types of cheating, misrepresentation of authorship, failure to properly cite sources, as well as deliberate attempts to plagiarize (that is, intentionally or knowingly using someone else’s ideas, words, and/or thoughts without acknowledging the source). All work for which another source is not cited is assumed to be that of the writer. ALL material taken from another source must be cited by in-line references with appropriate information contained in a bibliography or list of works cited. Material from field notes or interviews must be referenced as such.
AccessibilityTo request academic accommodations due to a disability, students should contact Services for Students with Disabilities in the Cowell Building. If you have a letter indicating you have a disability which requires academic accommodations, please present the letter to me so that I will be able to provide the accommodations that you need in this class.
Grading: Grades based on class participation (= doing problems and other portfolio work during the course of the semester) (33.3%); module exams (33.3%); final exam (33.3%).
Grading scheme translation:
A = demonstrated excellence
B = demonstrated competence
C = suggested misunderstanding
D = demonstrated misunderstanding
F = not attempted